Seems like in the last two years, I cannot win anything on the slots, but a few years ago, it was common place that on the first night of the cruise I would play for a few minutes, make $50 or so in my first few pulls and then I would take my winnings and walk, never returning to the casino that cruise. I did this for 3 cruises in a row. It seemed to me like they were programmed to pay out on night one. Then it just dried up, slots have not done that for me in the last 3 cruises. Since you have to enter your sail and sign to play and there are no laws governing casino's at sea, they could easily be throttling someone with playing habits such as mine. Not saying that is what is happening, just that it is possible. Could just be good luck and then bad luck.
Yes, my first cruise in 2009 on the fascination, I won a jackpot of $5000 on a 50 cent bet. I went on to win another 2500 during that 5 day cruise (one of them being 500 in the slot tournament)...walked off the ship with about 7300 in cash. A few years later, I won 2000 on one of those long pull tab tickets they sell and over 1000 on a slot the next day on a 1.35 bet. 2 years ago my mom won over 3000 on the quick hits. On other cruises I have lost some and sometimes break even. You definitely can win and I do see many people win while I am in the casino.
I don't play slots. I tend to lose at them. My ex would always make money at slots in Vegas. She might spend $20 on a trip, but would always hit at least $100+. Biggest was just under $400. I play blackjack and are ahead both cruising and Vegas. I do not bet big. I play for fun. Two cruises. First one lost $100 on the cruise. Last one, won $220. Vegas, I am 7 or 9 on winning. Winning between $100 and $900 on a trip. The two losing, one was $100, the other was about $400 (we chased the losses, and learned to not do that).
I have had good cruises and bad in the casino. In 2009, I hit a slot for $3,500 on the first night while onboard the Enchantment OTS. They took my picture holding the money, and it was posted all over the ship. People kept coming up to me and saying "You're the casino guy, aren't you?" Two summers ago, I won more than $4k on a cruise, and just last week I hit Symphony for several thousand. It isn't all winning, though. I lost $2K last year while on the Radiance OTS. I blame that stupid bathtub sized craps table.